Country Market Development.
The 9 month construction of our new centre was recorded and images were produced into our time lapse film.
First shown at the launch of our new centre on the 31st May 2014, the film also features a countdown from friends, customers and colleagues during the build process. A big thank you to everyone who took part.
The New Building
The new building was opened to the public on 31st May 2014.
The centre has been set out to provide a consistently good shopping experience in a comfortable environment with easy access for customers on one level.
The building has been designed to be sustainable, fully recyclable, energy efficient and sympathetic to our environment. Some of the main features include a large 250kw solar PV system on our south facing roof, a large air source heating system, heat recovery systems, remote refrigeration units, led and low energy lighting, 'super insulated' panels, rain water harvesting and recycling of the wooden pallets used to deliver building materials into timber features within the building itself. We are proud to have been awarded an "EPC" energy performance certificate and rating of "A". Possibly a unique achievement for a Garden Centre, and a demonstration of our genuine commitment to providing an environmentally sustainable business for the future.
Landmark for 2022.. our PV system has now harvested 2 million kilowatts of the suns energy (and still going strong).
As a planning condition of the re-development, a full archaeological survey was carried out on the entire site during 2011. A number of Roman Pottery kilns, a range of Roman earthenware pottery and an Iron Age Milling Stone & Quern were uncovered and documented. The Pottery Kilns were part of the Malthouse Farm group from nearly 2,000 years ago that manufactured basic earthenware for export, using probably the nearby River Slea to transport the pottery to Londinium (London) and then to Europe.
Unfortunately, it was not practical to leave the kilns on view within the new development and they have been reburied deep underneath the foundations of the new building. A small selection of the ancient Pottery and Iron Age artifacts can be seen at Fergies Restaurant within the new Centre.
A full 32 page article on the report was published by the Hampshire Field Club & Archaeological Society in 'Hampshire Studies' vol 69.